The principles of Islam
معنى الإسلام وحقيقته
The Meaning and Essence of Islam
أركان الإسلام والإيمان .
Islam is based on five pillars
The articles of Iman
الواجبة على الأفراد .
The Duties Incumbent on the Individual
معرفة الأنبياء والدلائل على صدقهم
Knowing the messengers
الشريعة الإسلامية .
The shari'as' sources
( الدين والعقل والنفس والمال والعرض )
The shari'ah and the Deen
الجهاد في سبيل الله .
AL - Jihad
نظام الحياة في الإسلام
ISLAMIC CONCEPT OF LIFE
The chief characteristic of the Islamic Concept of Life is that it does not admit a conflict, nay, not even a significant separation between life-spiritual and life-mundane. It does not confine itself merely in purifying the spiritual and the moral life of man in the limited sense of the word. Its domain extends to the entire gamut of life. It wants to mould individual life as well as the social order in healthy patterns, so that the Kingdom of God may really be established on the earth and so that peace, contentment and well-being may fill the world as waters fill the oceans. The Islamic Way of Life is based on this unique approach to life and a peculiar concept of man's place in the Universe. That is why it is necessary that before we proceed to discuss the moral, social, political and economic systems of Islam, we should have a clear idea of the Islamic Concept of Life.
There are certain
basic postulates which should be understood and appreciated at the very
outset. These postulates are as follows:
1. Allah Who is the Creator, the Ruler and the Lord of the entire Universe has created man and provided him with temporary station in that part of His vast kingdom (cosmos) which is known as the earth. He has endowed man with the faculties of thinking and understanding, and has given him the power to distinguish right from wrong. Man has also been invested with freedom of will and choice and the power to use the resources of the world in any manner he likes. In short, man has been given a sort of autonomy while being appointed by God on earth as a successor to the beings that had previously populated it.
2. Before assigning to man the inheritance of the earth, God made it explicitly clear to him that He alone is the Lord, the Ruler and the Deity. As such, the entire Universe and
all the creatures in it ( including man )must submit to Him alone. Man must not think himself totally free and should know that this earth is not his permanent abode. He has been made to live upon it only during the period of his probation, and in due course, he will return to his Lord, to be judged according to the way he has utilized the period of probation. The only right course for man is to acknowledge Allah as the only Lord, the Sustainer and the Deity and to follow His Guidance and His Commands in all walks of life. Man must live this life with the realization that he is to be judged and his sole objective should be to merit the pleasure of Allah so as to emerge successful in the final test. Conduct which is contrary to this would lead man astray. If, man follows the course of piety and Godliness (which he is free to choose and follow) he will succeed in this world and in the next, in this world he will live a life of peace and contentment, and in the Hereafter he will qualify himself for the heaven of eternal bliss, al-Jannah. And if, he chooses to follow the other course, i.e., that of Godlessness
and evil (which he
is equally free to choose and follow) his life will be one of
corruption, disruption and frustration in this world and he will meet
colossal misfortune in the life to come - that abode of pain and misery
which is called Jahannam (Hell).
3. After administering the warning, God set man upon the earth and provided the very first human beings (Adam and Eve) with His Guidance in accordance with which men were to live on the earth. Thus, man's life on this earth did not begin in utter darkness. The very first man was provided with a burning torch of light and guidance so that humanity might attain its glorious destiny. The very first man received revealed knowledge from God Himself. He had knowledge of the reality and was given the code of life by following which he could live a life of bliss and success. This code of life was Islam, the attitude of complete submission to Allah, the Creator of man and of the whole universe. It was this religion which Adam, the first man, passed down to posterity. But later generations gradually drifted away from the right path and adopted different erroneous paths. Because of negligence, they lost the original teachings, or due to folly or mischief they adulterated and perverted them. They associated with God innumerable human beings, non-human objects and imaginary entities as deities and indulged in Shirk (polytheism) of the worst type. They mixed up the pure teachings of God with strange myths, ideas and philosophies and thus produced a jungle of religions and cults. They discarded the God-given principles of social ethics and collective morality, the Shari'ah, and deprived the human life of peace and tranquillity.
4. Although men departed from the path of truth, disregarded and distorted the Shari'ah and some of them even revolted against the code of Divine Guidance, yet God did not destroy them or force them to the right course. Forced conversion to the right path was not in keeping with the autonomy He had given to man. Instead, God appointed certain virtuous persons from amongst the people themselves, to discharge the responsibility of recalling and
guiding men to the
right path during their sojourn on the earth. These men believed in God,
and lived a life of obedience to Him. He honored them by His revelations
and gave them the knowledge of reality. These men, known as prophets
(peace be upon all of them), were assigned the task of presenting the
message of truth to humanity and of asking the people to come to the
path of the Lord.
5. These prophets were raised in all epochs, in all lands and in all nations. Out of numerous prophets sent by God, the Qurfan explicitly mentions twenty five. All of them brought the same message, all of them advocated the same way of life (Deen) i.e., the way which was revealed to man on the first day of his existence. All of them followed the same guidance: the guidance which was prescribed by the Lord for man at the outset of his career on the earth. All of them stood for the same mission: they called men to the religion if Islam, asked those who accepted the Divine Guidance to live in accordance with it: and organized them into a movement for the establishment of the
Divine Law, and for putting an end to all deviations from the Right Path. Every prophet tried to fulfill this mission in the best possible way. But quite a number of people never accepted this guidance and many of those who accepted it gradually drifted astray and, after al lapse of time, lost the guidance or distorted it through innovations and perversions.
6. At last, God raised Prophet Mohammed (peace be upon him) in the land of Arabia and assigned to him the completion of the mission for which earlier prophets were ordained. The message of Mohammed (peace be upon him) was for the whole of mankind. He presented anew the teachings of Islam in their pristine form and provided mankind once again, with the Divine Guidance which they had lost in its original form. He organized all those who accepted his message into one Ummah (Nation) which was charged with reconstructing its own life in accordance with the teachings of Islam, by calling mankind to the path of righteousness and with establishing the supremacy of the word of God on the earth. This guidance is enshrined
in the Holy Qur'an which constitutes the only right code of conduct for mankind.
IMAN (FAITH): ITS NATURE AND CHARACTER
We have discussed above those basic postulates of Islam which, on the one hand, revealed God's plan for providing guidance to man in this world and, on the other, defined the nature, position and status of man in it. Now, let us study the foundations on which the Qur'an wants to develop man's relationship with Allah and the concept of life which naturally follows from that relationship.
The Qur'an deals with this problem on many an occasion but the entire concept of life envisaged by it is epitomized in the following verse: "God hath purchased of the Believers.
Their persons and their goods;
For theirs (in return)
Is the Garden (of Paradise)
They fight in His Cause,
And slay and are slain: A promise binding on Him In Truth, through the Law, The Gospel, and the Qur'an: And who is more faithful To his Covenant than God? Then rejoice in bargain Which ye have concluded:
That is the achievement supreme."
In the above verse the nature of the relationship which comes into existence between man and God because of Imam (the act of reposing faith in Allah) has been called a "bargain". This means that Iman in Allah is not a mere metaphysical concept; it is in the nature of a contract by which man barters his life and his belongings with Allah in exchange for Paradise in the life Hereafter. God so to say, purchases a believer's life and property and promises, by way of price, the award of Paradise in the life after death. The concept of bargain has important implications and we
should, therefore, first of all clearly understand its nature and meanings.
The fact of the matter is that each and every thing in this world belongs to Allah. He is the real owner of them all. As such, man's life and riches, which are part of this world, also belong to Him, because it is He Who created them and it is He Who has assigned them to each man for his use. Looking at the problem from this angle; the question of His purchasing what is already His: Man is not their real owner; he has no title to sell them. But there is one thing which has been conferred on man, and which now belongs My to him, and that is his free will, the freedom of choice of following or not following the path of Allah. As man has been endowed with free will in this respect, he is free to acknowledge or not to acknowledge the reality of things. Although this freedom of will and choice that man possesses, does not automatically make him the real owner of all the energies and resources on which he has command, nor does he acquire the title to utilize them in any way he likes, nor does his
acknowledgment of reality or refusal to do so in any way affects reality as such, yet it does mean that he is free to acknowledge the sovereignty of God and His over lordship on his own life and belongings or refuse to acknowledge it and to arrogate to himself the position of total independence. He may, if he so likes, regard himself free from all obligations to the Lord and may think that the enjoys full rights and powers over all that he has, and thus, may use them according to his own wishes unfettered by any higher command. It is here that the question of bargain comes in. This bargain does not mean that god is purchasing something which belongs to man. Its real nature is this: All creation belongs to God but He has bestowed certain things on man to be used by him as a trust from God. And man has been given freedom to honestly fulfill the trust or if he so likes, to betray it or misuse it. Now, God demands that man should willingly and voluntarily (and not under duress or compulsion) acknowledge those things as His which really belongs to Him and man should use them as a trust from God and
not as something his own to be used as he pleases. Thus, a man who voluntarily renounces the freedom even to refuse God's supremacy and instead acknowledges His sovereignty, so to say, "sells" his "autonomy" (which too is a gift from God and not something which man has acquired of his own) to God, and gets in return God's promise of eternal bliss that is Paradise. A man who makes such a bargain is a "Mu'min (Believer) and Iman (Belief) is the Islamic name for this contract; while the one who chooses not to enter into this contract, or after making such a contract amounting to its gross breach, is one who has followed the course of the devil. Thus Allah says:
"Say if it be that your fathers,
Your sons, your brothers,
Your mates, or your kindred;
The wealth that you have gained;
The commerce in which you fear a decline: or the dwellings in which you delight
Are dearer to you than God,
Or His apostle, of the striving
In His cause; then wait until Allah brings about His Decision.
And God Guides not the rebellious." (Al-Qur'an, IX:24)
The attempt to avoid or abrogate this contract can lead to Kufr (total disbelief). Such is the nature and the contract. Now let us briefly study its various aspects and stipulations.
1. God has put us to serious trail on two counts:
(a). He has left man free, but even after giving him that freedom He wishes to see whether or not man realizes his true position; whether he remains honest and steadfast and maintains loyalty and allegiance to the Lord, or loses his head and revolts against his own Creator; whether he behaves like a noble soul, or tramples under foot all values of decency and starts playing fantastic tricks.
(b). He wants to see whether man is prepared to have such confidence in God as to offer his life and wealth in return for what is a promise, that is to materialize in the next world and whether he is prepared to surrender his More...
|ISLAM IN BRIEF||THE STATUS OF WOMAN IN ISLAM|
|THE PURPOSE OF CREATION||THE GLOBAL MESSENGER|
|THE MUSLIM’S BELIEF||MUHAMMAD : ALLAH’S MESSENGER TO ALL MANKIND|
جميع الحقوق محفوظة للموقع 1431-1437هـ